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Page 46

How any particular initiatory rite will affect you can often not be foreseen. Some people find them incredibly invigorating, others terrifying.

Hermetic Virtues

Inheritor of a Dying World Initiatory Experiences in the Golden Dawn

(continued)

thing beforehand. Remember that the Hegemon is there to help you and will be by your side, ready to prompt you if necessary.

The single most important thing in any initiation, whether it is astral or actual, ‘blind’ or not, is your own desire to wholeheartedly participate in the experience in every way. Listen to what you are being told, allow yourself to form impressions and if things start seeming overly-verbose and complex (some sections of the Golden Dawn grades are), don’t worry, for you can always study the words later. Trust the process, trust yourself and have faith in the Hegemon and the Fratres and Sorores of your temple.

Initiatory Experiences How any particular initiatory rite will affect you can often not be foreseen. Some people find them incredibly invigorating, others terrifying. In the Golden Dawn system of Magic, clues to how you may react to any particular grade can be found in your astrological chart.

It is surprising how often those with a lot of Earth in their chart, may suddenly experi- ence weight changes following a 1=10, Zelator initiation. This grade is attributed to the element of Earth and in an attempt to transmute its lesson, it is perhaps unsurprising that the difference is seen on a bodily level. Money and finances are another area often af- fected by this grade.

The 2=9 air grade may see a smoker, quit and psychic sensitivity increase. The 3=8, wa- ter grade, associated with Hod, is often good for communication and the mind. The 4=7 fire grade, attributed to Netzach, is about love and understanding what it really is. These last two grades always hit you in whatever weak points you have because they are un- balanced and take you off the Middle Pillar. Remember though, that in order to know the ‘middle’, you must first know where the extremes lie.

If you have been used to other elemental systems, the association of water with Hod, or air with Lunar Yesod, may at first seem counter-intuitive. This is in part because the Golden Dawn system was influenced by old alchemical and philosophical ideas about fire and water creating air. Thus you have fiery Netzach, acting with watery Hod to cre- ate airy Yesod. There is more to this ‘mystery’ for you to uncover and without giving too much away, it is important to recall how the Sephiroth on the Tree of Life are connected to each other by paths, each with their own attributes, which feed into the sephiroth, colourising and enhancing them through this interaction.

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